Barry in 1959.
June 14, 1919
New York City, New York, USA
|Died||December 9, 2009
Woodland Hills, Los Angeles
|Spouse(s)||Betty Claire Kalb (1944–2003; her death)|
|Children||Michael Barry (b.
January 4, 1946 )|
Frederick Barry (b. April 12, 1953 )
Elizabeth Barry (adopted March 12, 1967 )
Gene Barry (June 14, 1919 – December 9, 2009) was an American stage, screen, and television actor. Barry is best remembered for his leading roles in the films The Atomic City (1952) and The War of The Worlds (1953) and for his portrayal of the title character in the TV series Bat Masterson, among many roles.
Personal life 
Barry was born Eugene Klass in New York City, the son of Eva (née Conn) and Martin Klass; all of his grandparents were Jewish immigrants from Russia. Barry exhibited early artistic skills with singing and playing violin as a child and later spent two years at the Chatham Square School of Music on a scholarship awarded for his vocal ability. When Barry was 25, he married Betty Claire Kalb (February 12, 1923 – January 31, 2003) on October 22, 1944. At the time of their marriage, Kalb was an actress known by the stage name, Julie Carson. Their marriage produced three children; two biological sons and an adopted daughter.
Barry chose his professional name in honor of John Barrymore and made his Broadway debut as Captain Paul Duval in the 1942 revival of Sigmund Romberg's The New Moon. He later portrayed Falke in Rosalinda (1942), Nova Kovich in The Merry Widow (1943), Lieutenant Bunin in Catherine Was Great (1944), Dorante and Comte De Chateau-Gaillard in The Would-Be Gentleman (1946), The Doctor in Happy as Larry (1950), and played a variety of roles in the musical revue Bless You All (1950).
In 1951, Barry was hired for his first movie, in the role of "Dr. Frank Addison" in The Atomic City (1952), and then in 1952, Barry was cast as "Dr. Clayton Forrester" in the science fiction film The War of the Worlds (1953). Much later, Barry also made a cameo appearance in Steven Spielberg's remake of War of the Worlds (2005), along with his co-star Ann Robinson from the film of 1952.
When the situation comedy Our Miss Brooks was given a change in format in 1955, Barry was cast in a recurring role as the physical-education teacher "Gene Talbot", the new romantic interest of series star Eve Arden. While the show was cancelled in 1956, Barry's character—a ladies' man with expensive tastes—served as the model for three shows in which he starred.
Bat Masterson, a fictionalized recounting of the life of the real-life U.S. Marshal / gambler, and gunman was telecast by NBC-TV from 1958 to 1961. In 1990, Barry recreated the role of Bat Masterson for two episodes of Guns of Paradise alongside Hugh O'Brian as Wyatt Earp and the following year in The Gambler Returns: The Luck of the Draw, also with O'Brian as Earp.
In his next TV series, Burke's Law, Barry played a millionaire homicide captain who was chauffeured in his limousine as he solved crimes; in the final season, he became a secret agent. This series was telecast on ABC-TV from 1963 to 1965. For his performance in it, Barry won the Golden Globe Award for Best Actor in 1965. (This series returned to TV in 1993-94 with Barry once again in the title role.)
Barry's third TV series was called The Name of the Game, in which he played the sophisticated publisher of a family of magazines, and he was one of three lead characters on the series. The other two lead actors were Robert Stack and Tony Franciosa who rotated with Barry week by week as the primary character in each week's program. This series was shown by NBC from 1968 to 1971. One of the magazines that Barry's character published was called People magazine, several years before the actual People magazine was first published.
Shortly before the filming of The Name of the Game series began, Barry played the villain—a wealthy psychiatrist— in Prescription: Murder, the two-hour pilot episode of the TV series Columbo.
In 1972, Barry starred in the ITV television series The Adventurer, along with Barry Morse and Catherine Schell. He played Gene Bradley, a government agent of independent means, who poses as a glamorous American movie star.
Barry returned to Broadway on two occasions - in 1962 in The Perfect Setup, and in 1983 in the Broadway premiere of the musical La Cage aux Folles. For his portrayal of Georges, Barry was nominated for a Tony Award.
For his contribution to live theatre, Gene Barry received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame which is located at 6555 Hollywood Boulevard. In 1994, a Golden Palm Star on the Palm Springs, California, Walk of Stars was dedicated to him.
Barry died on December 9, 2009 at Sunrise Senior Living in Woodland Hills, California, at the age of ninety. At his death, he was survived by his sons, Michael and Frederick, and his daughter, Elizabeth, as well as three grandchildren Taylor, Jessica and Josh, and two great-grandchildren. His wife, Betty, had died earlier, in 2003, after fifty-eight years of marriage. His sister, REVA, owns a restaurant called REVAS in Whangarei, New Zealand, where she has lived since 1974.
- The Atomic City (1952)
- The Girls of Pleasure Island (1953)
- The War of the Worlds (1953)
- Those Redheads From Seattle (1953) filmed in 3-D
- Alaska Seas (1954)
- Red Garters (1954)
- Naked Alibi (1954)
- Soldier of Fortune (1955)
- The Purple Mask (1955)
- The Houston Story (1956)
- Back from Eternity (1956)
- China Gate (1957)
- The 27th Day (1957)
- Forty Guns (1957)
- Hong Kong Confidential (1958)
- Thunder Road (1958)
- Maroc 7 (1967)
- Subterfuge (1968)
- The Second Coming of Suzanne (1974)
- Guyana: Crime of the Century (1979)
- War of the Worlds (2005)
Television work 
- Our Miss Brooks (1955–1956)
- Bat Masterson (1958–1961)
- Pete and Gladys as himself in "Crossed Wires" (1961)
- Burke's Law (1963–1966)
- Columbo: Prescription: Murder (1968)
- Istanbul Express (1968)
- The Name of the Game (1968–1971)
- Do You Take This Stranger? (1971)
- The Devil and Miss Sarah (1971)
- The Adventurer (1972–1973)
- Ransom for Alice! (1977)
- Aspen (1977) (miniseries)
- Charlie's Angels - Angels In The Wings (23 November 1977)
- A Cry for Love (1980)
- The Girl, the Gold Watch & Dynamite (1981)
- The Adventures of Nellie Bly (1981)
- Perry Mason: The Case of the Lost Love (1987)
- Turn Back the Clock (1989)
- The Gambler Returns: The Luck of the Draw (1991)
- Burke's Law (1994–1995)
- These Old Broads (2001)
- Gene Barry biography
- Boxer, Tim (1987). The Jewish Celebrity Hall of Fame. New York: Shapolsky.
- Gene Barry, Original Georges in La Cage Aux Folles, Dies
- Palm Springs Walk of Stars by date dedicated
- Gene Barry dies at 90; star of 'Bat Masterson' and co-star of 'La Cage aux Folles'
- "Actor Gene Barry Dies", The Washington Post, December 10, 2009.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Gene Barry|
- Gene Barry at the Internet Movie Database
- Gene Barry at the Internet Broadway Database
- Gene Barry at AllRovi
- Review of The War Of The Worlds
- Comprehensive Gene Barry Fan Page
- Gene Barry - Daily Telegraph obituary